I 207. (April 15, 2019): Kusuma: The Seed Producer

Kusuma, is a member of Lakshmi self-help group, in a small village Tikra of Mohanlalganj block, in Lucknow district. She is the treasurer of her group.

“Earlier, I had no knowledge about anything. I did not know who used to come or go from our own village, as I barely stepped out of my house, and on rare occasions that I did, I put on a big veil which covered my entire face.”

Joining the self-help group was the best decision of Kusuma as she mentions – “After joining the group, A whole new world of learning opened before me. I started attending meetings, do monthly savings, and became a part of training and discussions.”

She also took money from her SHG for –

Rs 3,000 for opening a Chaat Shop for her husband

Rs 30,000 for purchasing a buffalo

Kusuma has also taken an active part in health and agriculture. Through her SHG, she learned about maternal health, as a result of which she was able to save the life of a pregnant woman in her village, whose baby died before delivery. She took the woman to the Community Health Center and later to a nearby hospital.

Apart from health, she also gained a lot of knowledge in agriculture. She learned about different varieties of seeds like DBW 17, She sowed 15 kgs of seed on her land and used compost and Jeevamrit, due to which the productivity increased. She produced 2 quintals of seed.

Earlier she used to sell the grains at Rs 12-Rs 13 per kg, but now, she sells the seed at Rs 25-Rs 30 per kg. She has sold her seeds for Rs 6000.

“Now whenever any decision needs to be made regarding agriculture, I am the first person to give advice, Earlier my family did not ask for my opinion, now it’s me who they come to, even my in-laws and paternal family members. SHG has given me respect and value.”

Ankit and Sara